Climate Action

What is Climate Change?

Climate change is the gradual global increase in temperature that impacts various elements of the climate differently depending on where you live. This change is caused by the increase in various gases, referred to as greenhouse gases (GHGs), being released into the atmosphere, primarily carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels such as oil, gasoline, natural gas, coal, etc.

The impacts from climate change expected in Brantford include increased extreme rain events, increased hot days and hot nights and longer heat waves, increased vector-borne disease (such as Lyme), poorer air quality, increased winter precipitation and shorter warmer winter seasons. These impacts are already happening and will continue to increase for the next century. For additional information of the expected climate impacts to Brantford due to climate change, please visit Climate Data’s Brantford page.

Collectively as a community, and as individuals, we need to focus on reducing our carbon emissions and move toward a carbon neutral future by 2050. This means reducing our emissions as much as possible, and putting in place means of absorbing carbon (such as trees) to offset those emissions that cannot be eliminated otherwise.

For more information on the causes of climate change and how it’s impacting Canada, please visit the Government of Canada’s webpage on climate change.

Take Action on Climate Change

Show us how you are tackling climate change on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter using #BrantfordClimateAction. Making climate change part of the conversation is an important contribution.

Here are some tips and resources for you to get started or continue reducing your emissions at work, home, and in between: 

Measure your Carbon Footprint
The first step to making change is understanding where your personal or business carbon emissions are coming from. You can use this online calculator to start to figure that out.
Reduce Electricity and Natural Gas Use
  • Turn off lights, TV, electronics when you’re done with them
  • Take advantage of natural daylight and let the sun shine in during the day
  • Adjust your thermostat at night and when you’re not going to be at home
  • Wash clothes in cold water and hang clothes to dry outside in the summer and inside in the winter
  • When it’s cold outside turn down the thermostat (even 1 degree) and put on slippers and a sweater
  • Reduce wasted energy by improving your building’s envelope by resealing air leaks, adding insulation, replacing windows and doors, and replacing the roof
  • Improve energy efficiency at home by upgrading lighting and appliances to ENERGY STAR-certified
  • Reduce your emissions by switching to electric appliances instead of natural gas
  • Generate your own power at home by installing solar panels or a geothermal system

There are many rebates available to homeowners to retrofit your home through Enbridge, SaveOnEnergy, and the Canada Greener Homes Grant.

Take Low Carbon Transportation
Reduce Water Use
  • Install low flow washroom fixtures such as toilets, faucets, and showers. Look for the WaterSense label before buying
  • Take shorter showers
  • Only run the dishwasher when you have a full load
  • Don’t water your lawn and instead only water your gardens
  • Buy a rain barrel and use rain water for watering your garden or lawn or washing your car
  • Plant a rain garden to collect the stormwater (rain and melted snow) that runs off your grass, roof, and driveway
  • Plant native Ontario plant species that are drought tolerant and don’t need to be watered as frequently

For more tips on water conservation, visit our City's Water Conservation page.

Reduce Waste
  • Participate in the City’s recycling and organics programs by separating recyclable and food waste from the garbage
  • Separate yard waste (grass, leaves, etc.) for free yard waste collection by the City 
  • Download the recycling coach app to answer all your recycling questions 
  • Pack your lunch for work or school in reusable containers to have a garbage free lunch
  • Print less at home and work.
  • Use a reusable water bottle and/or coffee mug
  • Switch to reusable shopping bags for all your shopping needs
Reduce Emissions from Food
  • Buy local food at the Brantford Farmer’s Market
  • Join a community garden such as Equal Ground Community Gardens
  • Try incorporating more plants into your diet and do Meatless Mondays
  • Look for certified food labels to help you make sustainable choices like USDA Organic, Non-GMO, Fair Trade, MSC (seafood), and Rainforest Alliance
  • Grow your own food in a backyard garden or try kitchen windowsill herb planters
  • Reduce food waste by planning meals, using leftover vegetables in a soup, or freezing leftovers
Get Involved
  • Join (or start!) an environmental club at school or work
  • Join or attend the City’s Environmental and Sustainability Policy Advisory Committee
  • Join the Brant Tree Coalition to plant trees across the City and County.
  • Follow the City of Brantford and #BrantfordClimateAction on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to stay up to date with what the City is doing to reduce our impact on climate change.

Sustainable Business Support Office

Businesses play an important role in the fight against climate change. The Chamber of Commerce Brantford-Brant and the City of Brantford have partnered to create a Sustainable Business Support Office to share resources and information on how businesses can reduce their emissions and improve sustainability. 

Brantford’s Climate Change Action Plan

The City has prepared a Climate Change Action Plan for both the Corporation and the Community to focus on mitigating our impact on climate change be reducing our GHG emissions.

The City has declared a municipal target of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 for both the Corporation and the community with the following interim targets:

  • 30% reduction from 2018 levels by 2030
  • 80% reduction from 2018 levels by 2040
  • 100% (net-zero) reduction from 2018 levels by 2050

Community Climate Change Action Plan

The Community Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP) focuses on actions that community members can take to reduce their own emissions and provides tools to make behavioural changes, such as reducing single passenger vehicles, making homes and buildings more energy efficient, reducing waste and water use, and focusing on carbon offsets that absorb emissions from the atmosphere.

Download the City of Brantford’s Community Climate Change Action Plan.

Corporate Climate Change Action Plan

The Corporate CCAP provides a plan for reducing GHG emissions emitted by the Corporation of the City of Brantford. This includes any emissions that are produced by any City owned or managed assets including buildings, fleet, water and wastewater treatment facilities, streetlights and traffic signals, and emissions from the landfill.

The City of Brantford is a member of the Partners for Climate Protection which is a program from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and ICLEI to support municipalities with their work toward climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts. Brantford joined this network in 1996 and has worked toward completing the five milestones that are part of the program for addressing climate change mitigation. The City of Brantford achieved the fifth and final milestone for both the Corporate and Community streams in February 2024. 

Climate Action Plan Timeline
Milestone Action Status
One Complete a baseline emissions inventory Complete
Two Set emission reduction targets Complete
Three Prepare a Climate Change Action Plan Complete
Four Implement Climate Change Action Plan Complete
Five Ongoing monitoring and review Complete

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory

The City conducted a Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory for both corporate and community emission sources to identify the baseline emissions level from which we can track progress toward our carbon neutral goal. Emissions will be tracked annually and an update will be posted here every other year.

Corporate Emissions from 2018 to 2022
SectorEmission Source2018 GHG (T of CO2e)2021 GHG (T of CO2e)2022 GHG (T of CO2e)Change (2018 to 2022)


Electricity & Natural Gas






Gasoline & Diesel





Streetlights & Traffic Lights







Electricity & Natural Gas












Community Emissions from 2018 to 2022
SectorEmission Source2018 GHG (T of CO2e)2021 GHG (T of CO2e)2022 GHG (T of CO2e)Change (2018 to 2022)


Gasoline & Diesel






Electricity & Natural Gas





Commercial/ Institutional

Electricity & Natural Gas






Electricity & Natural Gas






Methane Gas











City of Brantford 2021-2022 Corporate-Community Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory

Climate Emergency Declaration

In 2019, the City of Brantford Council declared a Climate Emergency  stating that Canada has disproportionately contributed to the climate and ecological crises, and that emergency mobilization on an unprecedented scale will be required. Furthermore, the City agrees, in principle, to becoming a net-zero carbon community by 2050.

The climate emergency declaration also requested that staff develop a process by which all matters coming before council consider and quantify (where possible) the impacts on climate change. As a result of this, all staff reports that come before council will have a discussion section for climate change and environmental impacts where information on this topic will be provided for Council to aid in their decision making. Where it is feasible to do so, an estimated total lifetime GHG emissions will be calculated and provided for Council’s information. This information will be consolidated quarterly and annual reports with this information will be provided to the public. These reports will be posted on this webpage when available. This process is under development and will be in effect November 1, 2021.